Where are we today in Residential Real Estate?

Existing home sales were up 10% in October over last year’s
sales pace.  Why?  One of the main reasons is that prices are
down.   In many price points and
locations, prices are slowly increasing but in others, they continue to
fall.  In a recent poll by Zillow, home owners responded to a question
asking about their property values…here are their answers:  26% thought their property values went
up;  25% thought their value had remained
unchanged and 49% thought their values went down.  Well, the truth of the matter is that 72% of
the country has lost value in their homes this year and only 18% had seen an
increase.  Unfortunately, as we all know,
perception isn’t reality – too bad for us. 
Why are we having value issues? 
As we have discussed in the past, a lot of the problems stem from the
Home Valuation Code of Conduct and the ramifications it has had on our
appraisals lately – let’s hope this gets reversed soon!  Another reason for the increase in sales is
interest rates.  Rates are at historic
lows and have been for several months. And lastly, the first time home buyer tax credit and the subsequent
has generated additional sales. 
The extension of the credit also includes a component where home owners
who have been in their principal residence greater than 5 years can sell and
move into another principal residence and receive a $6,500 tax credit under
certain conditions.  See the link above
for additional details.

So, you ask, what does this mean to me?  Well, you need to get busy finding first time
buyers and move up buyers who have been in their homes for more than 5 years!  You need to become proactive and seek out
people wanting to be educated on the market and take advantage of the
opportunity available to them.  Why?  If you aren’t being proactive and you are
sitting back waiting for people to come to you or you are lucky enough to be in
the situation where you are taking orders – like many did from 2003-2006 – you
will be out of business in 2011!  History
repeats itself as we all know.  Don’t sit
back and wait for it to happen – make it happen.  Get it? 
Got it?  Good!

Now, go sell something!